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The DreamLeague Season 13 Major has had nothing but close series throughout the first few days of the playoffs. But Team Liquid had the momentum and strategy necessary to complete the first sweep today when they eliminated Natus Vincere from the Dota 2 event.
There were times where that indecisiveness in critical moments reared its head again. But thanks to Samuel “Boxi” Svahn’s steady play, Liquid were able to close things out and move on.
Na’Vi haven’t had a lot of luck shutting down the carry players of their opponents and that trend continued in game one against Liquid. Michael “miCKe” Vu crushed the bottom lane and went 19-3-5 to start the series. All of his teammates also had double-digit assists and more than 30,000 hero damage, which meant that Na’Vi could never just focus down the Morphling.
Idan “MagicaL” Vardanian held his own on Sniper against most of what Liquid threw at him, but just having one hero, especially one as limited in solo approach as your main push power, didn’t help Na’Vi.
Even though the match ended up lasting 81 minutes, Na’Vi never held a lead and Liquid slowly chipped away at Na’Vi’s excellent high ground defense. It took them more than 30 minutes just to break into the high ground with a good push that had enough juice to take down the throne.
Despite the incredible defensive play from Na’Vi’s core, Liquid had their foothold and the Morphling was too built up for any of the CIS heroes to take it down, especially after getting an Apex—it absolutely melted the enemy racks. Even with four buybacks available, Na’Vi lost positioning and couldn’t do anything to save the game.
Game two was more of the same from Liquid. They went with Treant Protector, Leshrac, and Oracle for their first three again while throwing Boxi on Pangolier in the five spot.
Na’Vi weren’t able to get anything going for themselves early on and could only watch as they fell behind to the strong top and middle lane pushes from Liquid. Max “qojqva” Bröcker’s Broodmother was perfectly zoning and devouring its enemies, running around with a cluster of little spiders and going 12-1-5 to lead the kill count for its team.
Boxi was actually the only Liquid player to lose a lane, but that didn’t affect the teamfights at all. The Pango was perfect for the back and forth prodding that both teams were doing. It wasn’t until the final minutes where he really shined, rolling around to put his teammates in great positioning against the enemy by bumping Na’Vi around.
That last fight allowed Liquid to break into the high ground again, winning the series 2-0 in the first sweep of the playoffs. It also spelled the end for Na’Vi at the Major and the last CIS team was eliminated from the event.
Liquid will be back in action at 6:30am CT on Jan. 24 when they take on TNC Predator in the third round of the lower bracket.